The Breshad Perriman experiment lasted less than six months. The veteran receiver and former first-round pick was one of nine cuts made Monday morning by the Detroit Lions.
The Lions signed Perriman in the opening days of free agency and he entered the offseason program as a projected starter after the team didn’t address the receiver position the first two days of the draft.
But Perriman, the son of former Lions standout Brett, never found his footing in Detroit. After a sluggish performance in the early stages of the offseason program, Perriman suffered a hip injury that sidelined him several days during training camp.
Campbell and offensive coordinator Anthony Lynn didn’t hide the fact they wanted to see more from Perriman in the preseason finale, but in his final audition for a roster spot, he dropped a pair of passes.
“From where we were at, at the time (of the signing), we were looking to add a veteran guy, a guy who had played,” Lions coach Dan Campbell said. “We kinda knew what he was. For us, it was, ‘Hey, let’s bring in a guy, let him compete and see what he can do.’ I guess that’s a miss, because we let him go, but at the same time, there was a reason we brought him in, to get a look at him. At this point, we just felt like he wasn’t going to be a part of this journey.”
It remains to be seen whether cutting Perriman will lead to another receiver earning a spot on Detroit’s 53-man roster or the team will enter the season with just four at the position. The team needs to get to the allotted 53 players ahead of Tuesday’s 4 p.m. deadline.
Veteran Tyrell Williams and Kalif Raymond, along with rookie Amon-Ra St. Brown, are considered locks, while second-year pro Quintez Cephus seemingly did enough through training camp and the preseason to maintain his spot.
A fifth receiving job, if the Lions go with one, would likely go to either Tom Kennedy or Geronimo Allison.
“I would say that there’s a chance we keep five,” Campbell said. “…I think (Kennedy’s) got an inside track to be here, but that’s not 100%. We’ve still got another day of practice, there are still things on the waiver wire. But I know this: He’s worth keeping around another day.”
Perriman signed a one-year, $2.5 million contract with the Lions in March, which included $2 million in guarantees. That money will continue to count against the team’s salary cap in 2021.
“Yeah, we were hopeful,” Campbell said. “We thought it would go that way, but again, that’s why you compete.”
Perriman, who has battled injuries throughout his pro career, now will look to latch on with another team ahead of the regular season. Detroit was already his fifth stop in the past five years. Playing with the New York Jets last season, he recorded 30 receptions for 505 yards and three touchdowns.
Known for his impressive speed, Perriman has averaged 16.5 yards per reception across 63 career games.